Sunday, March 22, 2015

Report: East Village resident sues dog walker for losing Sugar



From the New York Post today:

The Manhattan man who allegedly “flipped out” last month and lost Sugar — a beloved pit bull mix who has become a social media celebrity — has been outed in court papers as Tommy Doerr, a 46-year-old East Village resident.

Devastated dog owner Morgan Bogle, 33, is suing Doerr for negligence in Manhattan Supreme Court.

She went to court against Doerr “because he refused to speak to me,” Bogle told The Post.

“I have tried to play detective for three and a half weeks, and the reality is we just don’t know” what happened to the tan-and-white, 4-year-old Sugar, said Bogle.

Bogle is seeking $15,000 damages from Doerr, as well as the return of Sugar, who went missing on Feb. 23 under mysterious circumstances.

Doerr had been Sugar’s dog walker for three years.

For the latest Sugar updates, head to Twitter and Facebook.

Previously on EV Grieve:
More about Sugar, the missing pit bull mix with a $5k reward (78 comments)

Reward for Sugar is now $10,000, thanks to NBA all-star David Lee (45 comments)

An East Village Sugar sighting (53 comments)

49 comments:

Anonymous said...

What dog-walker has $15,000?

Anonymous said...

This surely isn't about money. They likely had to attach a financial claim to the suit. It is about getting him to talk and share info that could help with the return of the dog. The suit also gets his name out there, which is helpful. Maybe now someone who knows him but didn't know he was involved in this might be able to share some info that could solve this mystery.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 8:48, The suit is not about getting his name out. They could have named him on the first day. And it's a civil suit, not a criminal suit, so he won't be compelled to say anything, especially if he has no money.

Giovanni said...

Now that they have finally made the dog walker's name public maybe they can get some better leads from people who know him. They waited much too long doing this believing somehow he was going to be cooperative, but for some mysterious reason that never seemed to happen. Now the dog coulld be anywhere but people may have seen Tom during this episode and can come forward about what really happened.

There has been so much bad information being spread about this case it's almost like battling a Soviet style Counter Intelligence Program. The only thing that's certain is that someone out there is trying to obfuscate the truth. For starters:

Were there drugs involved or not? If there were then find the drug dealer, since they are the ones who love pit bulls and are often involved in the dog fighting rings.

Is this the same Tom listed on Yelp as Tom's Pet Care on East 10th St? If it is, then he should have ever been hired with years of bad reviews . If it's not, then they need to clear this Tom's name, yet even after being accused of losing Sugar this Tom never came out to clear his own name, which seems odd.

Now that it's going to court maybe Tom will share some information, or maybe someone else will finally come forward. Even knowing whether or not Sugar simply ran away during his epic meltdown would be a good clue.

Anonymous said...

To 9:19 a.m.: The police have clearly refused to press criminal charges in this case, so the dog owners are pursuing a civil case, which, in part helps in getting the dog walker's name out there. Also, they might be able to work out a deal, getting him to talk in exchange for them dropping their pursuit of damages in this case. Also, if they had released the name on their own when this first started, he could have sued them for defamation. So this is a means to get his name out and, hopefully, get him to fess up what he did with the dog. It is awful that these people had to go to these lengths to get the information this creep should have freely given them from the start. I wish them luck with this approach.

Anonymous said...

For the record I do not know any of the people involved in this, Just playing devil's advocate, who would leave their dog with a dog walker for a lengthy period of time. I would never leave my dog like this. I would leave my dog with a family member, friend, or board him with the vet. I hope that nothing happened to the dog, however it was irresponsible to leave Sugar with a dog walker. This guy is a dog walker for a reason. He is paid a few dollars a day to pick up poop after dog's. If you love your pet you don't leave them like this.

Anonymous said...

If anyone with an education in law could chime in on this story it would be a big help. Until then we can only make assumptions to what the dog owner has been advised as well as the dog walker. I will make a guess that the police did not have enough evidence to pursue criminal charges since the dog walker does not have the dog so this is not a case of "stolen property" nor do they have any proof that he sold the dog to a third party. I agree with the dog owners as far as the need to sue the dog walker in this case. If he is proven to have lost, sold, or responsible for the this dogs death, he should not be in the dog care business and pay damages to the dog owners.

Elle said...

A family that is prepared to spend $10,000 for the safe return of their dog is absolutely not suing to make $15,000 here. Jeez people. I really, really hope this leads to some useful information.

Anonymous said...

To 11:36 a.m.: It's great that you have friends and family members to take care of your dog, but not everyone does, and it is common to use dog walkers and other pet care professionals. There are a lot of great people in the industry, and there are bad apples like this guy. If there is anything to be learned here, it is the important of hiring a true professional who works for a legitimate company and is supervised and accountable to someone. Sadly, lots of people are getting into the business now to make money, and they aren't qualified or competent.

Anonymous said...

@ Anon 11:36
That's the most judgmental and ludicrous thing I've ever heard. Your poor dog gets boarded up in a cage at the vet while you're out of town, nice. Maybe Morgan didn't want thqt for Sugar, a large pit bull that needs daily exercise.

Anonymous said...

If you don't have time to take care of your pet and walk him/her then you shouldn't own a dog.

DLD said...

This is ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

As a side note. Perhaps people should not have dogs if they travel for business often, travel out of town for more than a day, cannot afford to place the dog in a facility which is a safe place. The amount of dogs in the EV has exploded in recent years (lived here for over 3 decades) and I can only imagine some of these people are not responsible pet owners. I am suurpised how many young (early 20's) people have chosen the responsibility of owning a dog. Dogs need constant care, unlike cats and other pets. I know when I was that age the last thing I wanted was a dog which would have meant: making sure to be home at certain times every day to walk, feed and keep my pet company. No sleep overs are possible, nor weekend getaways. You are only young once and you can always get a dog when you get tired of a social life in your 30's.

Anonymous said...

I'm with you 12:47, but cats need constant care too. Not in the same ways as dogs, of course, but this idea that cats are self-sufficient leads to a lot of terrible cat parenting. In any case, YES, I was just out on Aves A/B, a one-block radius, and I must have run into 20 dogs (all very cute and I petted 3 of them).

I hope very much that all of these people with dogs are good pet parents. It's a lot of work to be a dog/cat parent, it costs a lot, they get sick just like kids, they have behavior issues just like kids—I'll back you up that a lot of people aren't ready for the responsibility. (I adopted my first cat in my early 20s but I grew up with cats and, as you can probably tell, I'm a animal nut lol)

ANYWAY sorry to blab about myself. I feel like this Sugar situation is tragic because it's such a clusterfuck, and it seems like everyone involved is sketchy or dubious somehow, including the weirdly overinvested commenters that keep popping up on these threads.

I hope that wherever Sugar ended up, she's in a big fluffy bed under a sunspot, being taken care of 24/7 by a good person, far away from this mess.

NOTORIOUS said...

What would a thread about Sugar be without the crazies. To say people who use dog walkers shouldn't own dogs is like saying people who hire a babysitter should never have kids. You clearly don't have a dog so why you'd even chime in here other than to fill some time in your meaningless life is beyond me

I hope this reveal leads to Sugar's safe return.

Anonymous said...

I don't want to pessimistic, but I highly doubt the dog will ever be found, as sad as it is. Hopefully, the dog went to a good home and is okay. Anything is possible, but the longer the owner waits, the more of reality sets in. This is a valuable lesson in ensuring who you are entrusting your pet with

Anonymous said...

@1:15--what's with the "meaningless life" comment? You clearly have some anger issues when conversing on a thread. And that goes for other rude people who just insult anyone who dares disagree with them---yeah you may be animal lovers but you are shitty when it comes to respecting and interacting with people who took the time to offer their thoughts on this.

I agree with 1:07--the whole story seems kind of fishy, and sadly by now Sugar might be in another state by now --or worse. I sure hope not.

And I agree, cats get lonely too and need loving attention as much as any dog. Take them with you on long trips ---the UK doesn't put pets in quarantine anymore, for instance.

What puzzles me though is why Sugar didn't have a microchip? Sorry if this was answered in another thread.

Anonymous said...

@2:39

A microchip is not a GPS tracker. It's basically a barcode that needs to be actively scanned by someone that chooses to do so.

Anonymous said...

What kind of person loses someone else's dog and then refuses to help find that dog? I can't believe this guy. He truly is a piece of garbage.

Giovanni said...

What's a thread about Sugar without everyone barking up the wrong tree? These are the facts as we know them: Someone lost her dog in a mind boggling fashion (Morgan Bogle.) Someone else who lost the dog while having some kind of mystery episode may or may not know who has Sugar (that would be Tom the hopefully now ex dog walker.) Since then the dog has not been seen. That's all. This isn't the Kennedy assassination or Area 51 or who shot J.R, there are no global conspiracies here or even Libertarian issues at stake.

Spoiler Alert: This is New York, people hire dog walkers every day, and nannies and baby sitters for their children. Stop the blame game. and whosever keeps ripping down the Sugar posters needs to stop and get a real hobby like

The reason the story has gotten so much attention is the bizarre circumstances of the dog walker who lost the dog, the $10,000 reward and the breathless non-stop coverage of media outlets from the NY Post to EV Grieve. Now we have thousands of pet owners losing sleep checking Facebook every minute for updates about Sugar which never come.

The fact is the has not been one confirmed Sugar sighting since she disappeared. This fact suggests that someone has her and is hiding her, or she somehow left Manhattan either on her own or with someone else without being seen. Until Tom The Silent Dog walker tells us what he knows or doesn't know, then the rest of us are just chasing our own tails with all this speculation.

Anonymous said...

On March 22, 2015 at 12:10 PM Anonymous said...

To 11:36 a.m.: It's great that you have friends and family members to take care of your dog, but not everyone does, and it is common to use dog walkers and other pet care professionals. There are a lot of great people in the industry, and there are bad apples like this guy. If there is anything to be learned here, it is the important of hiring a true professional who works for a legitimate company and is supervised and accountable to someone. Sadly, lots of people are getting into the business now to make money, and they aren't qualified or competent.

Anyone who goes into dogwalking to make a buck is in the wrong business; also, people who are only doing it for the money are the ones to avoid.
I've been walking dogs [for other people] for about 12 years now, and I'm sure I'd make more money washing dishes; you just about break even.

On March 22, 2015 at 12:25 PM Anonymous said...
If you don't have time to take care of your pet and walk him/her then you shouldn't own a dog.

Sorry to say, if you don't have a job, you probably shouldn't have a dog, and if you do have a job you need someone to walk and care for him during the hours you're away at your job—unless, of course, you're lucky enough to work from home or bring your dog to work. Not everyone can do that.

I'm watching this case to see what the dog walker has to say for himself; at least one report indicated he was using PCP or some other substance. I don't know who to believe, but this walker gives all dogwalkers a bad name.

NOTORIOUS said...

@2:39 when someone makes a statement like 'if you don't have time to walk a dog you shouldn't own one' it's a disrespectful dig at dog owners so please forgive me if I didnt break out my Emily Post etiquette manual on crafting a polite blog comment for the fragile. This dog is missing and it must be incredibly painful for the owners to go week after week not knowing where their pet is. I don't expect anyone who doesn't own a dog or who isn't an animal person to understand this grief, but lobbing around insulting judgements at these poor people isn't the answer. Can you imagine if this was a missing child last seen by its nanny and someone said "if you don't have time to take your child to the park you shouldn't have one?" The mommies would have their head on a stake in front a Park Slope co-op.

Anonymous said...

To the above poster, I have been a dog walker and it is a lucrative business if you are willing to put in the time. There is nothing wrong with that. We all need to eat. But there are people getting into the business with no training, no insurance and no business caring for animals. Everyone thinks it is easy, and too many dog owners think the same thing. You have to be careful who you hire and sadly even when you are careful there is risk involved in trusting someone else to take care of your pet. It would help if dog walkers had to have a certain amount of training in dog behavior and had to be licensed. You definitely shouldn't have someone board your pet in their apartment as you don't know who is coming in and out and what other animals might be there. Too much risk.

Anonymous said...

There seem to be some local dog people on this thread. Can you get your fellow dog owners and walkers to pick up the poop per city law? It's getting nastier and nastier recently. I love dogs and would never be anti-dog but I've been hearing some really nasty, even scary, comments from less pet friendly adults on this subject. The solution, well beyond our current society, is DNA registration for dogs and then fining the owners.

Anonymous said...

Tom Doerr is not an East Village resident as the NY Post reports. He lives in Murray Hill.

Anonymous said...

Some of the comments above are entirely bizarre. I have a dog and I travel often. Sure, that leaves me vulnerable, both in terms of caring for my dog, and the fact that my dog does not board when I am gone, but my dog walker instead stays in my apartment. A dog is part of your family; if you think it is just a source of entertainment you should get a video game. Sometimes the most expensive part of our vacations is taking care of our dog.

Benny from Da Bronx said...

@8:53 PM and everyone else who seems to have insider infomation on who the dogwalker "really' is: why don't you help end the drama and go ask him what happened to Sugar? Or are you just trying to deflect the conversation again with all these hidden agendas? It seems like some people around here claim to know so much about this case, but never seem to help or offer any answers to the mystery of what happened to Sugar. Methinks they are all lying to protect the truth.

Anonymous said...

Here's an idea for Sugar's owners:

Raise $90,000 via GoFundMe.com and offer that plus the $10,000 already being offered as a reward for $100,000 total reward money.

Someone will turn in Sugar for that.

$10,000 isn't enough - offer ten times that.

Anonymous said...

Dear dog people, and i am one too... please walk your dog on a leash. Dogs on a leash dont like dogs off a leash and despite how godlike your dog makes you feel, you cant control them 100%. Also, understand that playgrounds in the park ar for kids, not dogs. Hell i'd love a private piece of landscape to run around in too. Dog have their own playground there, its a dog park.. Pick up poop, and dispose of it properly. Like tie the bag.. If you somehow forgot a bag, pick it up next walk at the very least. And stop bringing your dogs into Bodegas and other food establishments. We have so few left, lets not have another lawsuit like the wheelchair ramp claims. im about to go on a buisness trip this week, with my dogs.
Signed
responsible owner

Anonymous said...

Regarding DNA registration: 1) Is the dog's DNA present in feces? 2) Think about what it would cost to run a dog-poop DNA lab. All the time, equipment, even the back-office work. It seems like the ticket would have to be really high just to cover the expenses. Then, people will challenge these fines, so you have to add court costs too. It just doesn't seem practical.

Anonymous said...

How did this become about dog poop? Most dog owners clean up after their pets and we get just as upset as the rest of you about people who fail to do that.

Hey, how about all the car drivers among you tell other drivers to stop killing and maiming pedestrians in the crosswalk?

See how this works?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 12:35 is a greedy suspect. Send that IP address to the police. The reward isn't going up. If you have the dog, you can turn it in no questions asked. If you have tips that lead to the dog, the tipper gets the reward, the thief goes to jail.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous 11:36am,

I'm sorry to the people disagreeing, but I have to agree with you. I don't know Morgan so I will fully admit that I could be wrong, but as I check for Sugar updates daily I keep wondering how someone who can travel overseas for their fashion line, can't afford to board their dog at a place that offers dog walking too?There are plenty of places in NYC where you can safely board your dog, and they will make sure your dog gets walked by trained dog walkers. I don't mean to offend or spark an argument here; it's just a thought. I continue to hope for Sugar's safe return.

Anonymous said...

I have never commented on one of these things before but the RAGE I feel after reading some of these comments has me breaking the seal. Who are all of you people who think that if you have to leave the house for 5 minutes you shouldn't have a pet? That is the most absurd thing I literally have EVER heard. I don't know a single person who has never had to travel for work or leave their apartment for a day or longer. Morgan left the country for 3 DAYS, ok? Not some crazy long period of time, and no one said she did this often either. It was a one-time occurrence and the fact that she could be at blame for any of this is BEYOND me. She rescued Sugar from a life of neglect/abuse and gave her a safe and happy home for the past 4 years. I'd call that pretty f*cking responsible if you ask me, and there should be a hell of a lot more people out there like her.

Secondly, the same way you hire a babysitter, you hire a dog walker or pet sitter. You don't take your child to some institution to have it boarded, you generally leave them with a friend or sitter (like a 14 yr old neighbor) that you trust. About 2% of people I know in NYC have family here, so that is out of the question. People who use the Tompkins Square dog run see each other every day, are friends, and very often offer to watch each other's pets while they are away. Morgan had been using Tom for 3 YEARS and she trusted him because she got positive results during that entire time. Several people who know him have commented on these threads saying how reliable he was and how much he loved the animals he cared for. This is not a case of someone hiring a random person off the street and entrusting them with their pet's life. How on Earth could anyone have predicted that this guy would have had some sort of mental breakdown?

So all of you losers who apparently don't have jobs and can't understand how anyone could offer love and shelter to an abandoned dog from a shelter while also still having a career need to find something to do other than sit around all day and judge other people when you have no f*cking clue what you're talking about.

End rant.

Anonymous said...

Wow 12:24pm. Hope you feel better now. No one was attacking anyone. There were just offering their input. I'm glad you got your rant off your chest.

Anonymous said...

I agree with above. It seems the general consensus is everyone is worried about Sugar. Anything else is just opinion, but nobody's attacking. To the rant-er: the name calling is unnecessary

Anonymous said...

Yep DNA is in the dog poop. Quick google reveals: https://www.vgl.ucdavis.edu/services/dogpileid/ a commercial kit. Sure it would cost money. What doesn't? As for what made me annoyed at other peoples' dog poop? Watching a little kid wipe out into a pile in the middle of the sidewalk and the mom start ranting a about poisoning local dogs got me thinking. Watching entitled well heeled dog owners look around to see if they can get away without scooping and then slink away. Some locals on a friends block who feel as entitled as the average well paid newcomer and send their dog down to poop endlessly in front of the other buildings. For years and years. Yeah people suggest they stop. They don't. Curious about the "hey why should we talk about dog poop in this thread and distract from conspiracy theories about a lost dog." angle. I'm all for pedestrian safety and, unless I'm wrong, there are traffic tickets involved. If it hurts your feelings that piles of dog poop or idiots who block whole sidewalks with their retractable leashes annoy others then maybe actively hassle other arrogant dog owners or stay out of the comment threads. Yeah and keep them on leashes when you're not in the dog park. Or move back to the suburbs where dogs can run free.

Anonymous said...

Hey 2:28, maybe it's you who doesn't have a job with that long(and predictable) rant like that.

Calm down. Please.

Anonymous said...

@responsible owner
I wish everyone that has a dog was a thoughtful and respectful of park and playground rules as you are. Sauer Park on 12h street is officially a children's playground and not a dog run although as soon as it snows or rains it becomes an instant dog run. I live on the block and often remind people running their dogs of this fact and asked them to use dog run in TSP. You would not believe the excuses I heard like: "my dog doesn't like that park" "I was trying to get the salt off my dogs feet so I brought them in here" to the classic: "nobody's here so who cares". It is no help that somebody keeps stealing the "No Dogs Allowed" sign from the gate either. I like dogs but I like children too and think each should have their own places to play. Please respect others and follow some simple rules. Rant over.

Anonymous said...

Totally agree..who does that? What a terrible person.

Anonymous said...

That is none of your business. She is an amazing person for rescuing a dog. She was wronged here and you saying she shouldn't have a dog just goes to show your an asshole and know nothing about dogs. Go be negative and insensitive somewhere else your not welcome here asshole

Anonymous said...

Uh, people work and stuff and travel. What's the view like from your pedestal in the ivory tower of perfection?

rachel said...

Good ones. Plus, any dog walker worth their salt carries insurance. I certainly do.

rachel said...

I've been a dog walker for 10 years and a trainer for 4. Yes, I do it for a reason. Because I love animals, and you can make a comfortable living at it if you're any good. Don't judge all pet care providers based on this horrible incident.

Anonymous said...

Who the hell are the last several commenters even talking to? You know you have to specify to whom you are responding, right? Everyone involved in this story is nuttier than a fruitcake.

Giovanni said...

Tom the dog walker who is being sued by Morgan Bogle for losing her dog Sugar has started a new dogwalking operation on the UWS, and he already has a 1 star rating on Yelp. Meanwhile there have been no new Sugar sightings for weeks. So if anyone sees Tom let him know there's a coyote on the loose in Riverside Park, maybe his coyote walking skills are better than his dog walking.

http://www.yelp.com/biz/west-side-dog-walks-new-york

Gojira said...

Giovanni, as of this moment, he's up to 5 one-stars, all prominently mentioning his starring role in the Sugar debacle. Let's hope tons more pile on.

TomB said...

Giovanni. I had nothing to do with Tom Doerr. I had my own issues back about five years ago. I recently got through over three years of recovery. Tom Doerr is a completely different person who I have nothing to do with.

Fyi if anyone is in need of a good dog walker I recently got through over three years of recovery and I am hopefully going to start volunteering soon. Ok thats whats up. Heres to second chances. Take care.

TomB said...

Dude those reviews were from 2010. That was over 6 years ago. I am a completely different person than I was way back when. I think deserve a second chance.